95% of Golf Players Don't Know All the Rules of Golf! Do You?


By: J.P. Naomi

6 Min Quiz

Image: shutterstock

About This Quiz

Tees? Check!

Balls? Check!

Clubs? Check!

It’s time to put on your best golfing attire and see if you have what it takes to ace this ultimate rules of golf quiz!

Now before we get going, raise your hand if you have trouble waking up for work in the morning. Press the snooze button too many times? Don’t care if you walk in late? But now let’s say you have a tee time for Sunday morning at 6 a.m. Bet you’d have no trouble waking up then! And you’ll be right on time to boot!

You see, there’s something different about waking up early when it involves heading out to the course. Bright and early on a summer’s day, there’s a cool breeze and the crisp smell of morning dew. Your buddies meet you, and away you go, driving out to the first hole. As the morning goes on, you spot other golfers, giving them a polite head tilt or quick wave as you pass from hole to hole, stopping politely if they are about to swing. It’s just part of the etiquette! You appreciate the sport, you respect the rules and before you know it, you’re on the back nine - hoping the wind and the bunkers treat you a little better than they did on the front!

So as you begin this quiz, we wish you golfer’s luck: "May your drives be straight and down the fairway. May you avoid the rough. And when your balls fly over water, may they land only in soft, green stuff”! It's tee time, here we go!

What do golfers shout as a warning to anyone standing or moving in the line of an airborne golf ball?

"Fore!" was originally an Australian interjection that was used as early as 1881. It is thought to come from the word before, as in "look ahead".


In the game of golf, there is match play and ______ play.

Match play is when players compete for the lowest score on each hole. Stroke play is the fewest number of strokes during the entire round.


What is the name of the stick which rests in the hole until it is time for the players to putt?

Players may authorize another player or caddie to attend, remove, or hold up the flagstick before making a stroke. If they move it without authorization, they will be penalized.


The area where a player tees off from is known as the _________.

The terms tee, tee box, and "teeing ground" are synonymous. The name derives from the tee used to elevate a golf ball before striking it to commence play.


What happens if your ball is deemed 'unplayable'?

When a ball is unplayable, the player has several options, they can: 1. Go back to where they played the last shot and play a ball from there; or 2. Measure two club-lengths from the unplayable lie, drop a ball and play from there; or 3. Keep the unplayable lie between where they drop the ball and the hole, go back as far as they wish on a straight line and drop and play the ball.


A ball is considered lost if it is not found within _______ minutes of a player beginning to search for it.

...And if that ball is lost, the player must add a penalty stroke to his or her score and play another ball from where they last placed their shot. But please, just don't lose your ball!


Golfers are allowed to move loose __________, so long as the ball does not move.

A loose impediment is defined as a natural object that is not fixed or growing, not solidly embedded, and not adhering to the ball itself. Examples of loose impediments include leaves, twigs, acorns, small stones and insects.


Each player must _______ before moving on to the next hole.

To "hole out" is to get your ball into the cup, thereby completing your play of the hole. The past-tense is "holed out." Matt holed out with a putt of 15 feet!


If you lift your ball on the putting green, what do you put in its place?

All golfers should be prepared on the course with ball markers, repair tools, divot tool and hat clips. Ball markers come in all varieties of sizes, colors and may even display the golfer's favorite sports team or an advertisement from a charity tournament!


Players should never discontinue play except for when there is __________.

Lightning is the number one cause of players to stop playing. Until it passes, it is considered dangerous and not safe to play. Play can resume once the storm has passed.


If the player's ball comes to rest against the flagstick and falls in when the flagstick is removed, the player __________.

Did you know if your caddie is attending to the flagstick and fails to remove it causing the ball to strike it, the player incurs a penalty?! Better make sure they are 'on the ball'!


During play, a player should avoid ________.

Unless players mark their ball before starting the game, it is possible they could mistake theirs for another player's! If you play the wrong ball, you risk stroke penalties so "keep your eye on" your ball.


What is the proper technique for "dropping the ball"?

The rest of the rule states that you must re-drop if dropped ball hits the ground and rolls into a hazard, out of a hazard, more than two club-lengths, or closer to the hole than the rules permit.


When on the putting green, you should repair ball marks or old hole plugs, but you are not permitted to repair marks made by ________, even if they are in your line of putt.

The putting green rules say that if any part of your ball is touching the green, then it is on the green. You are permitted to brush away any leaves or other objects in the way of your putt line, but don't even think about repairing spike marks!


In golf, you are never permitted to hit your ball while it is _______.

Additionally, you must always strike the ball with the head of the club. Golfers are never allowed to push, scrape or rake the ball!


A _________ does not count as a stroke.

A player must not make any practice strokes during play of a hole or between holes. However a practice SWING is allowed. A STROKE is made with the intention of hitting a ball.


Together with the ________, The R&A governs the sport of golf worldwide

The USGA is the United States Golf Association. While most of the world adheres to the R&A rules, the US and Mexico follow the USGA. It was formed on December 22, 1894 as the Amateur Golf Association of the United States.


When are you NOT allowed to clean your golf ball?

Golf rules state that you may clean your ball when you are allowed to lift it. An exception to this rule is when you are determining whether or not the ball is unfit for play--it may not be cleaned then.


A ________ is any bunker or area of water on the golf course.

There are various types of hazards. They include: lateral water hazard, water hazard and bunkers. When playing a ball from a hazard, you are not permitted to remove loose impediments, however you can remove larger items such as the rake in the bunker.


What is the rule if your ball accidentally falls off the tee before you take a stroke?

So long as it was accidental and you were not in motion to swing, you may replace your ball without penalty. This occurs if the ball is misplaced on the tee, or if it is a windy day!


The player with the _______ score on the previous hole tees off first at the next hole.

So how do you determine who goes first on the first tee? This is arranged by the authorities! (or in amateur play, just decide among yourselves)


What it is called when you are the first player of the next hole?

The player who has the lowest score on a hole has the right to play first on the next hole. This is called the “honor" and all players strive for this "honor" at each hole.


In order to keep the proper flow of the course, all players should adhere to their _______.

Being late for your tee time is frowned upon on every golf course and by all serious players. Some courses are so strict that they may deny tardy golfers access to the course.


After playing a ball from the bunker, what are you required to do?

A rake is provided at each bunker. The proper technique is to play your ball, then step out of the bunker, and rake the sand so that no footprints remain in there. Talent required!


What is the maximum number of clubs allowed by each golfer?

Be sure to count your clubs! Anyone found with more than 14 will incur a penalty or in some cases, disqualification. If sharing clubs with a partner, the total between the two golfers may not exceed 14 either.


If your original ball is lost or out of bounds, what is the name of the ball that you continue playing with?

If the original ball is eventually found, you must stop playing with the provisional ball and resume play with the original. And don't forget to add one stroke for having to use the provisional ball.


What is the penalty if a ball at rest is struck by a moving ball?

Do you know what R&G stands for? It represents The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews. It is based in St. Andrews, Fife, Scotland and is regarded as the worldwide "Home of Golf."


_______ water is any temporary accumulation of water on the course which is visible before or after the player takes his or her stance.

Snow and ice are either casual water or loose impediments, at the option of the player, except that manufactured ice is an obstruction. Dew is not considered casual water, though it is highly present on many golf courses in the morning.


During play of a hole, the player whose ball is _______ the hole plays next.

If the farthest ball from the hole cannot be determined, any equitable system including a coin flip or mutual agreement may be used!


When setting up a tee shot, golfers can go up to _____ club-lengths behind the front line of the tee-marker, but never in front!

Golfers should play their tee shot from BETWEEN the tee-markers, though some prefer to step back two club-lengths. Some also like to change their ball before playing their tee shot.


Players must not ask for advice from anyone other than his partner or either of their _________.

A "caddie" is one who assists the player in accordance with the rules of golf. This may include carrying or handling the player’s clubs during play, as well as advising the golfer on position and equipment.


If another ball interferes with your play or is in%0Dyour line of putt, you may ask the owner of the%0Dball to _______ it.

In golf regulations and etiquette, it is proper to lift your ball out of the way if it interferes with another player's putt. Similarly, you can lift your own ball if it is in a position where it might assist another player!


What color tees are generally used for professionals in championship play?

Black or gold tee markers are usually used for championship play. Regular municipal courses are not equipped with this set of tees since very few public courses hold this caliber of tournaments.


A fellow competitor or caddie who causes a player's ball to be moved at rest ________________.

There is no penalty for accidentally moving a competitor's ball at rest. However, players should avoid touching or moving any other players' balls during play.


The player who keeps the scores of each competitor in the group on their scorecard is called the ________.

The marker is responsible for the scores recorded and must review the scores and raise any disputes before returning the scorecard.


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